Rapid advancements in technology have significantly impacted website design trends for 2024. Design components and features that were once considered cutting-edge have now become worn out, overused, and trite. The last thing you want when visitors land on your site is to lose potential conversions due to an outdated appearance or non-compliance with essential web standards.
Thankfully, our web design agency stays up to date with the latest website design trends, developing highly functional, user-friendly websites that perform exceptionally and boast an impressive aesthetic. We’d like to present some of the most recent breakthroughs, digital technology trends, standards, and projections for 2024.
Web Design Trends 2024
Certain aspects of web design will always remain crucial, such as user-friendly navigation, data security, and swift loading times. However, you can maintain your site’s cutting-edge status and search engine prominence by incorporating some of these inventive features and elements set to gain traction in 2024.
- 1Scrolling Animations
- 4Dynamic Cursors
- 5Interactive 3D Models and Content
- 6Gamified Design
- 7Material Design
- 8Isometric Design & Illustration
- 10Art Deco
- 11Organic Shapes
- 12Smart Video
- 13Text-Only Hero Images
- 14Custom Illustrations
- 15Full-Page Headers
- 16Dark Mode
- 17Data Visualization
- 18Full Height Homepage Hero
- 19Blending Photos With Graphical Elements
- 20Frosted Glass Effects
- 21Progressive Lead Nurturing Forms Integrated With Your CRM Tool
- 22Chatbots More Like “Chatbuds”
- 23Voice-Activated Interface
- 24Virtual Reality
1. Scrolling Animations
Scrolling animations add a dynamic, engaging element to a website’s user experience, as different animations and effects are triggered in response to a user’s scrolling actions. This can involve elements fading in or out, changing color, or moving into place, creating a visually captivating experience that encourages users to continue exploring the site.
On a website, micro-interactions are small animations that offer subtle feedback to users. One of the most commonly used micro-interactions is seeing a link change colors when a user mouses over it. With the focus on micro-interactions, that same experience might be given more attention to stand out. Imagine a gradient slowly shifting hues as you scroll down a page, or a pop of color exploding from your mouse after you click an element. These are prime examples of elevated micro-interactions that you’ll see more often.
As you might have guessed from the name, micro animations are small animations. But in this case, small doesn’t mean insignificant. Micro animations are extremely helpful when it comes to guiding users through their interactions with your website. They can also add an element of playfulness to your site like Smashmallow did with the micro animations in their hero image:
Micro animations have been popular for a few years, but in 2024, it’ll be about using them organically. As our UI/production designer explained, we’ll be thinking about how things move, if they’re on a curve or wheel instead of on a flat plane.
One of the latest web design trends for ecommerce sites is using micro animations to enhance user experience and give shoppers a more dynamic vision of their products. This yoga clothing store is using micro animations to show shoppers how their clothes fit and move on real people.
4. Dynamic Cursors
A creative way to enhance your users’ experience on your website is by customizing how they interact with your web elements, including their cursors. This 2024 web design trend has charmed users with its unanticipated subtlety. By altering the cursor’s shape or introducing cursor-triggered animations, visitors can enjoy engaging with diverse scrolling behaviors or on-click actions.
5. Interactive 3D Models And Content
Thanks to maturing web technology and web designers wanting to stand out from the average webpage, 3D elements that users can interact with have been increasingly used.
The results can be breathtaking – like the use of interactive 3D content on the Campo Alle Comete website.
3D model animations can also be used for products to offer a more true-to-life representation, allowing site visitors to see every detail from every angle, as if they were viewing the product in person. This enhances the online shopping experience, increasing customer confidence, and potentially improving conversion rates.
6. Gamified Design
Gamification is adding game-like elements to your website such as points, rewards, and challenges to entice the user to spend more time on your site and potentially provide information about themselves.
Adding interactive sections to your website is a great way to provide value for visitors, get them to engage with your website, and learn more about them.
Suppose you were a realtor and added a mortgage calculator to your website. You’re offering value to your visitors while also learning more about them based on the data being inputted into your calculator.
Examples of interactive marketing include:
- Assessments like quizzes
- Polls and surveys
7. Material Design
Material design is a design language that was introduced by Google back in 2014. Traditional web design looks flat. Material design is about using color and shadows to mimic the physical world and its textures and creating a consistent and appealing user interface.
Google’s icons for its software suite are an excellent example of material design:
The shadows on the Gmail envelope and the calendar are especially good examples of material design. It’s very subtle but goes a long way in making the icons look three-dimensional.
8. Isometric Design & Illustration
Similar to material design, isometric design makes 2D elements look 3D using angles and shadows. There are no converging lines and objects are presented as they are, not how the human eye sees them. Isometric design is done at a 30 degree angle, give the user a bird’s eye view of the object. Isometric design is the opposite of flat design.
Claymorphism uses two inner shadows and an outer shadow to achieve a 3D and floating effect. In web design, it is used for elements such as call to action buttons, charts, cards, icons to give them a dimensional but soft effect.
10. Art Deco
Art Deco, a design style originating in the 1920s, has emerged as a significant web design trend for 2024, resonating with modern aesthetics while evoking a sense of nostalgia and timeless elegance. This resurgence can be attributed to its distinctive features: geometric shapes, bold lines, and lavish ornamentation, which align seamlessly with the digital era’s emphasis on clean, structured designs and user-friendly interfaces.
The trend’s appeal in web design lies in its ability to blend classic luxury with contemporary minimalism, offering a visually striking and memorable user experience. Moreover, the Art Deco style’s adaptability allows it to be infused with modern color palettes and digital design techniques, making websites appear both sophisticated and cutting-edge.
11. Organic Shapes
Geometric shapes were a big website design trend in 2020, but in 2024, it’s all about organic shapes. Organic or fluid shapes are anything that doesn’t involve straight lines. Think of the shapes that happen in nature, like hills, and the edges of a lake or river, and how they are asymmetrical and winding.
Fluid shapes are a great way to break up sections of a website without harsh lines or angles. They’re also great to use in the background, like how Android uses circles behind products on their homepage:
12. Smart Video
Video has long been touted as a must-have for websites. People love videos because they are engaging and some users prefer to watch a video than read text. Videos can also build trust and drive conversions.
While video is great, it needs to be thought out. That’s what smart video is about: video with a purpose and meaning. Gone are the days of embedding a YouTube video on your site just to have one. One well-thought-out, high-quality video is better than a dozen haphazardly assembled ones.
We recommend creating informative videos that directly answer questions that you hear often from your prospects and clients. This will make your website an valuable resource and also help to establish your brand as an authority in your industry.
13. Text-Only Hero Images
Newspapers always put their most eye-catching, important information “above the fold” to increase sales. The website equivalent of this is at the top of a page and is called the “hero section.” A current trend to catch internet users’ attention who are bombarded by different web pages every day is removing the typical background image in the hero section and replacing it with eye-catching typography. A bold, unique font could be just the thing to get a user’s attention quickly.
14. Custom Illustrations
Stock images are out, custom graphics are in! Illustrations help to bring your company’s image to life. Custom illustrations are expected to lead the way as cookie-cutter stock graphics take a backseat.
15. Full-Page Headers
Full-page headers are expected to remain popular in web design in 2024. A common approach includes placing important text or call-to-action buttons on the left of the header and using enticing graphics to the right. This is because visitors tend to spend most of their attention on the top-left portion of your page.
16. Dark Mode
Dark mode web designs serve a couple of different functions. On the practical end, they help reduce eye strain, a concern for many as we are spending more and more time looking at screens. On the aesthetic end, dark mode easily creates an ultra-modern look for your website while giving you the ability to highlight other design elements just by darkening the elements that surround it.
17. Data Visualization
Communicating data in an engaging way is a struggle. But the struggle is worth it because using data visualization takes advantage of the fact that humans are visual creatures, and still conveys the message you need to get across. Data visualization creates images out of your data that engage your reader and makes them want to learn more about your brand. Infographics and graphs are some of the most popular ways to bring data to life.
18. Full Height Homepage Hero
Like a giant billboard, making your homepage hero section full-height can focus your users’ attention and serve as distraction-free messaging.
Think of full-screen hero sections as an opportunity for great storytelling. Just keep in mind that images will crop differently based on browser dimensions. You should use an image that will accommodate the design accordingly.
Concerned about your content not being “above the fold? The significance of having optimized content within the immediate viewport has diminished, given that most users are accustomed to scrolling down for more information.
19. Blending Photos with Graphical Elements
You might have noticed overlapping graphics on images in your social media feed. This mixing technique brings a level of creativity and fun to a typical image.
The trend is also catching on with websites. Mixing photography with graphics can reinforce your company branding and keep website visitors engaged with your content.
20. Frosted Glass Effects
Recent advances in web technology have allowed the easy implementation of the frosted glass effect on websites. The blurry appearance of elements behind the frosted glass overlay helps add color to an area while also allowing text or objects to appear over the image and remain readable.
The effect has become a popular option in a designer’s tool belt and has increasingly been used as a background in place of gradients.
21. Progressive Lead Nurturing Forms Integrated with Your CRM Tool
Online lead generation forms are one of the most important elements of a marketing website. We want to get to know a lot about our website visitors, but we can’t ask too many questions at any particular time. We place progressive/dynamic contact forms on the landing pages and display fields according to the lead’s journey.
Ideally, we don’t want to display too many fields in a form, but we can always adjust the form fields according to the data that we already know about our leads. We might ask the name, company, and email address at the first conversion and then ask for the phone number, title, company size, and company revenue fields at the next conversion opportunity.
Your CRM, like HubSpot, can store the information of your leads. By integrating it with your website, the CRM can recognize the lead when they come back to our websites and display form fields on the landing pages that we don’t know about the contact.
22. Chatbots More Like “Chatbuds”
Chatbots are another feature that has been popular for a few years and will continue to be relevant in 2024. As artificial intelligence and machine learning continue to get more sophisticated, we expect to see chatbots become the norm for simple customer service requests and “personal shopping.”
For example, if a customer visits your website, looking for phone support and the chatbot knows they have an available free phone upgrade. The chatbot can let them know about the upgrade. This can lead to a positive experience for the customer and save the business the customer support cost associated with talking to a live person.
Concerned about not having enough staff to manage a web chat? Utilize tools that can forward your web chats to your mobile phone, enabling you to engage with customers while on the move.
23. Voice-Activated Interface
The way we access information is changing – instead of typing into Google, we now ask a question or make a demand. This means web design is adjusting to keep up with the prevalence of voice chatbots and virtual assistants. While a voice-activated interface isn’t commonplace for most websites, this emerging trend isn’t going anywhere in the foreseeable future.
We can expect to see more and more websites integrating voice search as an option to traditional text search.
24. Virtual Reality
VR experiences on websites will continue to increase over the coming years. Think of sites like Airbnb that let you tour a rental before you book a reservation. Or the furniture site IKEA’s ability to showcase what a sofa would look like in your room.
VR can be a powerful tool for a website to serve useful, meaningful content to a visitor in a way that helps them make buying decisions.
Previous Trends That Have Become Standard or Common
1. White Space
The use of white space is about giving content room to breathe, not trying to cram the most information possible on the screen. The experience is more relaxing for your website visitors, the content stands out better, and readability is improved.
White space is just the term for the spacing we give between elements. It does not have to be white, as long as the area is empty. This is why it’s also known as “negative space.”
A clear indication of an outdated website is the presence of an overwhelming amount of text, often referred to as a “wall of words” and no white space. In contemporary web design, the focus is on creating a balanced and visually appealing layout that combines compelling visuals, concise text, and user-friendly navigation. The concept of a “wall of words” is considered obsolete, as it tends to overwhelm visitors and may limit engagement rates.
2. Parallax Scrolling
Parallax scrolling is a widely embraced web effect that adds dynamism to specific sections of a webpage. It’s typically employed in full-width applications, accompanied by images, videos, or textured visuals that contribute depth to a page. As users scroll past the media, the scrolling action creates an illusion of the media being positioned behind adjacent sections, making the content more engaging.
Gradients are a long-time trend that has evolved from subtle color overlays to eye-catching backgrounds.
They can be used to add depth, serve as a striking background, or subtly to add texture to an illustration. We increasingly see it used in bigger and bolder typography.
This trend has staying power. We’re excited to see the continual evolution of its use on websites.
4. Thumb-Friendly Mobile Navigation
Responsive design isn’t enough anymore. Your website should work well and be user-friendly on all mobile devices – regardless of the size! But in 2024, web design will continue to be focused on creating websites that are thumb-friendly.
What exactly is “thumb-friendly”?
We’re talking about the way we use our phones. If you’re reading this on your phone right now, look at how you’re holding it. Your fingers are probably wrapped around the back of your phone (or around a phone grip), leaving your thumb to do all the work. You probably look like this.
Not really. That’s how most of us use our smartphones, and that’s why thumb-friendly navigation is essential. Putting the navigation bar, menu, and even contact buttons in the space your thumb can reach (the center of the screen) makes your site more comfortable to use and improves your UX tenfold.
Here is a great graph showing the thumb-friendly areas of a phone screen:
5. Website Load Time and Page Speed
One of the most critical web design standards revolves around lightning-fast load times. Prompt loading speeds have been vital components of user experience (UX) and search engine optimization (SEO) for years and continue to be a top priority for high-ranking, high-converting websites.
Research indicates that over half of internet users expect websites to load quickly, within two seconds of clicking a link. If your site takes longer than three seconds to load, visitors are likely to abandon it and probably never return. Website performance directly affects a company’s revenue. For instance, Pinterest managed to reduce perceived waiting times by 40%, resulting in a 15% increase in search engine traffic and user registrations.
At TheeDigital, our mantra is “conversion, conversion, conversions.” We closely monitor website loading times to ensure a seamless user experience.
6. Intelligent Content Loading Techniques
A large number of websites today are laden with resource-intensive elements and external integrations, resulting in slower loading times. However, there are several methods available to create smarter websites that load only the necessary content for the user. Techniques such as lazy loading and infinite scrolling have been employed by major social networks for years and are particularly popular for lengthy single-page websites.
Adopting one or more of these technological approaches can provide a competitive edge and enhance the overall user experience, thereby improving conversion rates and search rankings. Lazy loading, for instance, ensures that web browsers like Google Chrome, Safari, and Firefox download only the visible content on the screen, conserving server resources and reducing loading times for unseen content.
Since many users never reach the bottom of a webpage, it makes more sense to load content as they scroll down, approaching the lower sections of the page.
7. Geolocation & Browser-Based Content
You may have noticed that the content on certain websites changes when revisited after a short period or accessed from a different device or browser. Advanced websites leverage browsing history and location data to deliver dynamic, personalized content rather than generic information intended for a broader audience.
Customized content for repeat visitors can result in higher conversion rates. This is evident in search engines like Google, where location-based results are displayed for queries. For instance, people searching for nearby restaurants in Raleigh, North Carolina, will see different results than users in other locations.
An efficient directory website can also take user preferences into account, such as prioritizing Italian restaurants in search results for users who have previously reviewed or saved them. Personalized content is particularly crucial for e-commerce websites, where displaying recently viewed, saved, or liked products and highlighting abandoned cart items can lead to increased conversions.
As users increasingly expect personalized website content, it will become a more significant factor in achieving a successful online presence.
8. Accessibility and Availability
Inclusivity and accessibility are more than a trend, but there is a growing need for web design to factor in the needs of people with disabilities. Having a site that every visitor can navigate and interact with is more than just part of good customer service and providing an excellent experience. It can increase conversion, boost your SEO, and help you reach a bigger audience.
Elements that improve accessibility include:
- Creating strong color contrast between text and backgrounds;
- Adding focus indicators, such as the rectangular outline that shows up around links when using keyboard navigation;
- Using labels and instructions with form fields rather than low-context placeholder text;
- Using functional alt tags for images (which also boosts SEO!)
9. Grid System
Are grid systems going away in 2024? While they may be harder to detect these days with overlapping sections and animated elements, grids continue to play a crucial role in ensuring the adaptability and responsiveness of website layouts across various screen sizes. Developers employ break points and CSS classes to dictate the presentation of elements on a diverse range of screen dimensions.
Examples of Grids in Use: Shrine from Google’s Material Studies
The Latest Web Design Trends and Standards for 2024 in Three Words: Fast, Clean and Eye-Catching
When you think about web design trends for 2024, think of custom illustrations, animated cursors, and blending photos with graphical elements. All of these and more will help to keep your site fresh in 2024. Updating your website’s design can positively impact your brand and revenue. If you want a modern and user-friendly website, contact our team today. Call 919-635-5575 or schedule a consultation today!